By J. Newsinger

British Counterinsurgency examines the insurgencies that experience faced the British country because the finish of the second one global struggle, and on the tools used to struggle them. It appears on the guerrilla campaigns in Palestine, Malaya, Kenya, Cyprus, South Yemen, Oman, and so much lately in Northern eire, and considers the explanations for British good fortune or failure in suppressing them. It presents a hard-nosed account of the realities of counterinsurgency as practised through the main skilled safeguard institution on this planet this present day.

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Extra info for British Counterinsurgency: From Palestine to Northern Ireland

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This completed the rout of the hard-pressed moderates. Lai Tek was replaced as general-secretary by Chin Peng. The final element in preparing the way for armed revolt was the developing offensive against the trade unions. With the full support of the government, the employers had combined together to launch a concerted attack on trade union organisation, cutting wages, victimising militants and engaging in the mass dismissal and eviction of strikers. The government backed up this offensive with increased legal harassment of the unions and the liberal use of police and troops as strike-breakers.

What will be argued here is that the vaunted British ‘model’ provides only half the answer to the Communist defeat in Malaya and that the other half is provided by the enormous political difficulties that the Malayan Communist Party (MCP) faced. Despite these difficulties and the overwhelmingly superior forces that the British were eventually able to concentrate against them, the Communists were nevertheless able to sustain their insurgency for ten years, a remarkable tribute to their courage, endurance and dedication.

In these circumstances a divide-and-rule strategy could have powerfully strengthened the British who instead persisted in a supposed attempt at even-handedness. At the very least, large numbers of Arabs could have been enlisted in special police units or in a local militia, which would have provided the security forces with both manpower and a way of intimidating the Yishuv. It was not without precedent. In the late 1930s the British had recruited Jewish police and made use of the Haganah against the Arab revolt.

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